September 25, 2023
what is academic writing

What is Academic Writing? 4 Types and 5 Interesting Facts

What is academic writing? – Broadly speaking, academic writing aims to explain or convey some idea or research findings to an audience. While the specific style varies by narrower objectives and audiences, most scholars agree that academic writing must be clear, concise, and terse.

There is also a general agreement in the scientific community about the types of academic writing. We review the four major types of academic writing below, highlighting major differences. These include the descriptive, analytical, persuasive, and critical types. We also offer five interesting facts about academic writing that you might have missed.

Four Types of academic writing

Michigan Author Writing
Michigan Author Writing

Academic writing is a lot like pizza: it’s got three different types of crust, and they all taste great.


This is perhaps the simplest and most basic type of academic writing. It is used when the author aims to just share information in the form of an article or a summary. The point is to represent evidence objectively. So, you will be fine as long as you are able to stick to facts.


This is a more sophisticated style of writing. As the name suggests, it goes beyond a mere representation of facts. You take extra steps to analyze the referenced evidence. This means you need to organize your information to allow for a comprehensive and consistent analysis. If you are not sure about the use of this style, you can always learn from professional writers. When you pay to get essay written by experienced writers, you can use the process as a major learning opportunity to improve your analytical academic writing skills.


By using this style, you enrich the analysis of referenced evidence by offering your take on the subject matter. Your viewpoint should not be a shot in the dark, though. It should flow logically and naturally from your arguments and analysis. Depending on the specific goal of your piece, your proposition can take the form of a recommendation, argument, or interpretation of facts.


The critical style of academic writing is pertinent to postgraduate studies and scientific research. It is the most advanced style, and it requires a lot of practice to master the skill. In a sense, it combines all the other three types one or another. But it is different in that it adds one or more points of view, which are used to contrast or compare the different arguments. Exploring the merits of each stance is key to the rigor of your piece when using this style.

Five Interesting Facts About Academic Writing

Michigan Poets

Academic writing is not as intimidating as you might think. Here are five things that are important to know about academic writing:

It’s Universal

You might think that academic writing varies from country to country. Not really. It is universal as a matter of principle. To make sure that your scientific work resonates with scholars and students worldwide, you must stick to the accepted styles of academic writing to convey your thoughts or analyses through the proper means and form. That said, formatting can be different depending on the institution, tutor, or country, but the overall approach and styles need to follow the established standards.

Practice makes progress

You read it right. When it comes to academic writing, you cannot hope for utter perfection no matter what. There will always be someone contesting your approach, conclusion, or style. And that’s a good thing because it aids your learning efforts. So, you should really look for incremental progress with your consistent practice. 

Every other piece must be better than the previous one. You should constantly improve your writing habit to make progress. Make sure you learn as you go. Don’t turn a blind eye to the feedback you get, even if it is an unpleasant one.

It is systematic and systemic

Academic writing must be both systematic and systemic. This means that you should be intentional and consistent with your process and flow of analysis. It also means that you should review everything that is related to the point at issue. Essentially, your analysis cannot leave any stone unturned.

No need for it to be boring

When talking about academic writing, you might be thinking about lots of boring charts, formulas, and stats. While this is true, there is no need to make your style boring and uninspiring. Instead, you can really augment the rigor of your analysis by using a rich vocabulary and idioms. Don’t overdo it, however. Academic writing is not belles-lettres, so avoid using colorful and evasive language that lends itself to ambivalent interpretations.

It uses the third person

You might have already noticed that the third person is the familiar grammatical voice in academic writing. This is done for the purpose of making your writing look impartial and formal. The reason is that the first person is thought to make your judgment subjective, i.e., biased. Bias in science is unacceptable. The second person could make it too informal.  

What is Academic Writing? – Finishing Strokes

Mastering academic writing skills are of critical importance at all stages of your education. No matter how strong your knowledge is, it might be of no avail if you are not able to convey your findings, concepts, and conclusions in an acceptable manner. It takes a lot of practice to become adept at it, so prepare for a long and exciting journey of serendipity.

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Andrew Mazur

Andrew Mazur is a professional writer and popular blogger. He has countless successful, top-notch writing projects and assignments under his belt. Andrew is a real pro when it comes to structuring and writing first-rate essays that meet the highest academic writing standards.

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